5 Facts About Serengeti National Park
5 Facts About Serengeti National Park: Serengeti national park is a wildlife viewing destination which is located in the northern part of Tanzania. This national park covers about 14750 square kilometers with spectacular landscapes and wildlife habitat.
The Tanzania National Parks Authority manages Serengeti national park as well as other national parks in Tanzania and it also ensures that conservation is practiced at the destination during safaris.
The word Serengeti is derived from “seringit” which means endless plains in the Maasai language which is a description of the vast savannah plains in Serengeti national park which is home to a variety of wildlife species as well as over 500 bird species.
Serengeti national park in Tanzania consists of not only vast savannah plains but also kopjes or rock outcrops like the Simba kopjes and the Moru kopjes. The national park is also made up of woodland, riverine forests, hills as well as rivers.
There are over 600,000 zebras, about 225 cheetahs, 1000 leopards, as well as gazelles, hyenas, antelopes, buffalos, impalas, hartebeests, topi, waterbucks, hippos, crocodiles, giraffes, dik dik bush bucks, elands, klipspringers and many others in Serengeti national park.
During safaris to Serengeti national park, some tourists prefer the dry season from June to October to visit the national park since wildlife species can easily be spotted especially around the water points in the national park.
Below are the 5 facts to know about Serengeti national park in Tanzania;
- One of the 7 natural wonders of Africa
Serengeti national park in Tanzania is one of the 7 natural wonders of Africa and is also a UNSECO world heritage site. This national park was famed for the natural wonder which takes place between Serengeti national park and Masai Mara national reserve in the south western part of Kenya.
The great wildebeest migration is the 7th natural wonder of Africa and is an annual migration which involves movement of over 1.5 wildebeests and over 200,000 zebras in Serengeti national park.
- Oldest eco system in the world
Serengeti national park has one of the oldest eco systems in the world with a diversity of wildlife and bird species. The Serengeti eco system consists of Serengeti national park, Ngorongoro conservation area, Maswa game reserve, Loliondo, Grumeti as well as Ikorongo and the Masai Mara national reserve in the south western part of Kenya.
This national park in Tanzania comprises of woodland and grassland which is the dominant vegetation in Serengeti national park. The grassy plains are also dotted with trees such as acacia trees.
Serengeti national park soils are comprised of volcanic ash from the volcanoes like Ol donyo lengai. The deposits of the volcanic ash affect the composition of grasslands which explains the high concentrations of wildlife species at certain times of the year.
The national park is made up of the central or Seronera area, northern Serengeti and western Serengeti;
- The western part of Serengeti national park consists of rivers as well as forests and is a location for the river crossings along the Grumeti river. The wildebeest migration goes through this part of Serengeti national park during the months of May to July.
- Central part of Serengeti national park is also referred to as Seronera area and is home to one of the largest concentrations of wildlife species in the national park. The central part of this national park is also popular among tourists during safaris.
- Northern part of Serengeti national park is made up of woodlands and hills and is located close to the Masai Mara national reserve in south western Kenya.
- Highest number of predators
Serengeti national park is home to over 3000 lions and is famous for its big numbers of predators such as cheetahs, leopards, serval cats, jackals as well as hyenas. Some of the spectacular safari experiences is watching as the predators hunt for their prey in the vast savannah plains of the national park.
It is easy to spot these predators during a safari in Serengeti national park especially the lions, leopards and cheetahs. Cheetahs can be seen around the south eastern plains of Serengeti national park and leopards can be seen around the Seronera river in the central part of Serengeti which is also referred to as the Seronera area.
- Home to the great wildebeest migration
The great wildebeest migration takes place in Serengeti national park and involves movement of herds of over 1.5 wildebeests and zebras. This migration takes place annually between Serengeti national park and Masai Mara national reserve.
Predators such as lions can also be seen in the nearby savannah plains during this migration as they prey on the wildebeests. The great wildebeest migration has made Serengeti national park a popular destination for safaris in Tanzania.
The river crossings in Serengeti national park are also another sight to look forward to during the great wildebeest migration. The wildebeests cross rivers such as the Grumeti river which has Nile crocodiles that feast on the wildebeests as they struggle to cross to the other side of the river.
Another river which is crossed by the wildebeests during their migration is the Mara river around the month of September. The calving season during which wildebeests give birth to their young ones is also another thing to look forward to during the great wildebeest migration in the month of February.
Different tour operators offer safari itineraries specifically for the great wildebeest migration which involves driving around the vast savannah plains filled with herds of wildebeests grazing. You can also enjoy seeing the wildebeests in their herds from the comfort of a hot air balloon in Serengeti national park.
- Big 5
The big 5 are among the wildlife species to look up to during safaris in Serengeti national park and they include elephants, lions, leopards, rhinos and buffalos. These wildlife species are referred to as the big 5 because they are the most difficult wildlife species to hunt on foot.
Serengeti national park has over 3000 lions which can be seen during safaris in different parts of the national park. This population of lions is considered the highest in Africa. Leopards in this national park are present throughout the year and are commonly seen in the Seronera area.
In the northern parts of Serengeti national park, you can enjoy seeing elephants moving in their herds. There are over 2000 elephants in Serengeti national park and they have greatly contributed to the eco system through their dung which acts as a fertilizer.
The rhinos are fewer in number compared to other big 5 species and are rarely spotted during a safari experience in Serengeti national park. Buffalos can also be seen in big numbers in Serengeti national park.